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PICS: Enda dons a blue helmet, meets Irish troops and saves Christmas

You’d never know there’s an election around the corner…

TAOISEACH ENDA KENNY met with Irish troops serving in south Lebanon and the Golan Heights earlier this week.

With an election just around the corner, the Fine Gael leader paid a well-timed visit to the region where Irish Defence Forces are serving as part of UN peacekeeping missions.

Accompanied by Defence Minister Simon Coveney and junior defence minister Paul Kehoe, Kenny met with troops from the Defence Forces’ 51st Infantry Group in south Lebanon on Monday.

23821984761_865ddcaa45_z Source: Defence Forces Flickr

There were a few high fives to be had with local children in the village of Tibnin:

23821876701_2d8921e8df_z Source: Defence Forces Flickr

He picked up a lovely bouquet:

23608685180_4b8f3e2699_z Source: Defence Forces Flickr

Got a feed in the mess:

23608717110_c5f74cdcfc_z Source: Defence Forces Flickr

And promised Company Sergeant Paul O’Mara that he would deliver a present to his son, Private David O’Mara, who is serving in the Golan Heights:

23536664369_4d747fe5b3_z Source: Defence Forces Flickr

Indeed Kenny’s next stop was the disputed region on Tuesday where he met with troops serving as part of the 50th Infantry Group.

It certainly wasn’t as relaxed as the Lebanon and so appropriate military uniform was required:

23906753165_b336865ed8_k Source: Defence Forces Flickr

There was a briefing on the current situation in the area, which is claimed by both Israel and Syria:

23279998153_eaca32d089_z Source: Defence Forces Flickr

But once inside the Irish camp, Kenny was able to relax and even throw the jacket off:

23798468152_ab5e261fe8_z Source: Defence Forces Flickr

And most importantly, Kenny was able to save Christmas by delivering that present to Private O’Mara:

23611078810_564d32f508_z Source: Defence Forces Flickr

Read: Bombs, Skype, and no tea: What Christmas is like for the Irish troops in Lebanon

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About the author:

Hugh O'Connell

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